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Arkansas Yucca

Yucca arkansana

Other common name(s):

Softleaf Yucca

Family:

Asparagaceae (Asparagus Family)

Plant Ecoregion Distribution Map

Cross Timbers, Edwards Plateau, Gulf Coast Prairies and Marshes, Southern Texas Plains, Texas Blackland Prairies
Carbonate Cross Timbers, Eastern Cross Timbers, Grand Prairie, Limestone Cut Plain, Western Cross Timbers
Bastrop Lost Pines, Floodplains and Low Terraces2, Northern Post Oak Savanna, Northern Prairie Outliers, San Antonio Prairie, Southern Post Oak Savanna
Balcones Canyonlands, Edwards Plateau Woodland
Coastal Sand Plain, Floodplains and Low Terraces4, Laguna Madre Barrier Island and Coastal Marshes, Lower Rio Grande Valley, Mid-Coast Barrier Islands and Coastal Marshes, Northern Humid Gulf Coastal Prairies, Southern Subhumid Gulf Coastal Prairies, Texas-Louisiana Coastal Marshes
Northern Nueces Alluvial Plains, Rio Grande Floodplain and Terraces, Semiarid Edwards Bajada, Texas-Tamaulipan Thornscrub
Floodplains and Low Terraces1, Northern Blackland Prairie, Southern Blackland Prairie

Plant Characteristics

Growth Form

Cactus & Succulent

Height

1
to
4
ft.

Spread

2
to
5
ft.

Leaf Retention

Evergreen

Lifespan

Perennial

Habitat and Care Requirements

Soil Type(s)

Sand, Loam, Clay, Well Drained

Light Requirement

Sun, Part Shade

Water Requirement

Low

Native Habitat

Grassland

Bloom and Attraction

Bloom Color

White, Green

Bloom Season

Spring, Summer, Fall

Seasonal Interest

Nectar

Wildlife Benefit

Moths

Maintenance

In sand it grows quickly. On limestone it grows more slowly. In the Cross Timbers Ecoregion it often grows in the shaded understory but doesn’t get enough light to flower. Needs good drainage. Good cold tolerance. Don’t plant near paths or driveway due to sharp tips. The flowers make this a beautiful mass planting. Propagation: Seed, root division, offshoots transplant.

Comments

Blooms May-October. Grows in Edwards Plateau up to Arkansas and Oklahoma. It is the yucca most commonly found in Cross Timbers and Blackland Ecoregions. Smallest Texas Yucca grows up to 2 feet. Leaves are light green, curled lengthwise, white-edged, sometimes twisted. They are soft with fine, curly white hairs. Flowers form a 6-7 foot central column of white bell flowers in spring. Fruit is a capsule with thin black seeds. Pollination: Yucca moths are the only insects that can successfully pollinate yucca flowers and developing yucca fruit is the only larval food source for yucca moths.
Previous Scientific Name(s): Synonym/s: Yucca angustissima var. mollis

References

1) Griffith, Bryce, Omernick & Rodgers (2007). Ecoregions of Texas. 2) Miller, George O., Landscaping with Native Plants of Texas 2nd Ed., 2013, pg 48. 3) Wasowski and Wasowski, Native Texas Plants Landscaping Region by Region, 1991, pg. 213 and 264-265. 4) https://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=YUAR2. 5) https://portal.torcherbaria.org/portal/taxa/index.php?taxon=Yucca+arkansana&formsubmit=Search+Terms. 6) http://bonap.net/TDC/Image/Map?taxonType=Species&taxonId=260&locationType=County&mapType=Normal. 7) https://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=43133#null. 8) https://anps.org/2017/02/04/know-your-natives-arkansas-yucca/.